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Bedford, Tunbridge Wells

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user reviews of The Bedford, Tunbridge Wells

please note - reviews on this site are purely the opinion of site visitors, so don't take them too seriously.

Very handy for station. Friendly and easy-going welcome. Great selection of beers. "Kitchen closed" sign when we were there - I don't know why.
Trev - 3 Jul 2021 14:07
Pleased to see the standard of the place has not dropped as a few years ago this place was one to be avoided in my view. A sports bar full of lager louts!

Nowadays the place has friendly knowledgeable bar staff, TVs with the sound down and a wider mix of clientele.
It's hard to think of a better "closest to the railway station" pub around.

There are plenty of real ales available: Bedfordshire Zingiber, Gadds #5, Bedford Steam Best, Turners Gold Spice, Pilgrim Gold Spice, Old Dairy Snow Top and some Greene King beers on my visit.

Definitely worth going to if you're in the area!
outtamehead - 31 Dec 2015 03:16
Decent enough alehouse with well kept selection of beers. As mentioned handy for the station - can be a bit pricey.
anonymous - 20 Sep 2015 07:42
Pub number 1 of a day of pub ticking & football in Tunbridge Wells.

Smallish corner plot pub right by the station that is very focused on ales. I wasn’t aware of this having never been here before so I was pleased and surprised to see such a cracking selection of ales that are charged as per their abv. 11 hand pumps with a different ale on each pump.

Due to it’s location I ended up visiting twice in 1 day. Visit number 1 @ lunchtime I went for Hardy and Hanson’s Bedford Steam @ 3.9%, on my evening visit I had Old Diary Brewery Summer Top @ 3.6%, both very good pints & kept well.

6 punters in who were chatting to the landlord and chef when I first visited then in the evening @ 10pm it was pretty packed with music playing and a mixed crowd.

Friendly little pub that I will be returning to on my next visit to TW not just because of it’s convenient location by the station.
lezford - 17 Aug 2015 16:55
The Bedford is a perfect example of how a real pub should be. Friendly, knowledgeable and passionate staff and a very efficiently managed cellar showcasing a wide range of both local and national ales. All landlords please note: visit this pub and copy what they do, because this is how you do it!
PollyPin - 20 Feb 2015 12:34
Unfortunately I don't go to Tunbridge Wells very often (generally only for the cricket), so I don't get to visit this pub as much as I'd like.

It's improved a lot over the last couple of years. There is a wide range of real ales and the staff are far more friendly now.
The landlord was keen to advise me about the beers and which ales he was planning to sell over the following weeks.

It's very handy for the railway station and definitely worth popping in for a couple of pints before catching your train!
outtamehead - 4 Jun 2014 13:19
Best pub in Tunbridge Wells by a mile. Fantastic choice of bitters from across Kent, Sussex, Surrey. Good food, good staff. Only problem is it can get too busy. Brilliant pub.
pubking78 - 17 Mar 2014 14:02
Goes from strength to strength. Beer range still impresses, now up to 10 ales on handpump all the time, usually supporting breweries within Kent with some interesting national beers, always nicely kept. Can get really busy though so avoid on a Friday/Saturday night if you don't like crowds.

Shame about the lack of pies now removing the delicious pork pies it's not going to make me purchase a full meal
sussexboy - 12 Oct 2013 13:43
What a very fine pub, lots of good ideas, lots of interest to look at while sampling any of the 10 ales, what a difference from the dump it was a few years ago. I'll certainly be back.
nelly0164 - 26 Aug 2013 20:17
I discovered this pub when waiting for the rain to clear and hoping to watch cricket down the road at The Nevill Ground. As a CAMRA Member I cannot fault this pub for its excellent selection of real ales. I was delighted to find that they served the very rare Belhaven Stout on draught as well as local Tonbridge Breweries Coppernob Ale. I did not have any food but my friend did and it looked very good. The barman was friendly and is clearly very interested in real ale. Definately worth a visit.
MJEllis77 - 26 Jul 2013 16:55
Much improved pub! I only visit Tunbridge Wells when the cricket is on and a maybe a couple of other times during the year. I popped in here yesterday and was impressed. The lager lout feel has gone and there were 10 hand pumps dispensing real ale. The beers went from regular brews like Abbot and Golden Hen to Franklin Pale Ale and Ripple Steam IPA which is what I had. The clientele was mixed and the bar staff were friendly. Very keen to offer samples of the ales.
The pub nearest the station is often one of the worst in the town. That most definitely does not apply here!
outtamehead - 2 Jun 2013 18:06
A real find in a dull drinking town, much changed from visit several years ago. Some excellent service, open plan but characterful pub, mixed custom and as very good pint of something new (recommended by the barmaid).
mtaylor40 - 20 May 2013 20:27
Nearest Pub to the Station has 10 hand pulls for 10 different ales.
Nice friendly barmaid. Plasma screen showing Scum v Chelsea.
Pricing is as follows:- 3%-4.1% is £3.00 4.2%-5% is £3.50 & 5.1%+ is £4.00 a pint
I had a pint of Millisbrewery Company Dartford Wobble for £3.50 was very nice.
bjbrummiejohn - 14 May 2013 08:44
Really good pub this. Ten beers on including a couple from the Goody Ales portfolio, a brewery I'd never even heard of, not being from the area.... so the provision of a dark beer in the form of Good Lord, a porter, gives this pub a higher score from me. Friendly and knowledgeable bar staff, still giving the option of straight or jug glass. Notice up pon th eblackboard suggesting recently under new management, and the kitchen is being revamped, so no food apparently as at earlier this week.
PhilR - 4 May 2013 18:36
A great opportunity to drink local Kent beers, including a number which are not normally seen in this neck of the woods - among them the splendid products of Eddy Gadd from the other end of the county.

Black mark for atmosphere however, as the bar staff seem to be obsessed with playing pounding rock music (at least on Friday evenings). This is totally at odds with the type of clientele and the generally conversation-friendly set up of this one-bar pub.
Jack_Spraggon - 17 Oct 2012 18:32
One of my favourite pubs in Tunbridge Wells. Up to eight ales available, though some are from the predictable Greene King range. Seems to support the Old Dairy Brewery which supplies some great ales as well as the Royal Tunbridge Wells/Spa Brewery.

Better since they've changed the prices to be based on beer strength rather than a flat rate. Usually a good atmosphere and definitely a mixed crowd, worth a stop by if you're in the area
sussexboy - 6 Sep 2012 23:25
Possibly the best pub in Tunbridge, 8 ales on draught, nice decor and what seems to be a good crowd. The barman when I arrived seemed a bit morose but it was only just into the afternoon. The crowd later that evening seems friendly for a mid-week turn out. All in all a must of any visit to the town and only seconds from the station, so a last minute pint easily possible.
wanderjahre - 16 Aug 2012 18:48
Possibly the closest pub to Tunbridge Wells station and well worth a visit. In decor and design it is reminiscent of a Weatherspoon's pub and was rather quiet when I called in mid-evening. But the beer was excellent and keenly priced and the welcome warm. It is the first pub for many a year when I was offered a choice between a straight glass or a handle.
simontheeditor - 4 Jul 2012 08:15
I popped in here after the cricket finished early due to bad weather. My last visit was a few years ago and I have to say the place has vastly improved. Perhaps it is a little too trendy for my tastes but previously I felt it was on the rough side.
As a CAMRA member I was pleased to see so many real ales available especially as several were Kentish brews. I had a pint from the Wantsum brewery which was fine. I don't travel to Tunbridge Wells very often but I'll visit this pub again when I'm next in town.
In my opinion the pub closest to the railway station is often one of the worst in the town. That cannot be said of The Bedford!

outtamehead - 10 Jun 2012 12:35
Far better than before with a good range of beers, especially from Kent independents. Lots of passing trade from the train station make it busy and not one where it is ideal to sit and while away the time unless you like people watching.

It is pricey but that is the way of the world and there aren't any many better pubs in the cere of T Wells.

It does not open on a Sunday which is bizarre when other pubs nearby have their best nights on a Sunday. Missing a trick there....
mithrandir1967 - 28 Dec 2011 15:05
This place has changed a lot in the last year or so. It used to be quite terrible but it has been smartened up and now attracts a nice crowd.
The interior is trendy and well thought out. Lunches each time that I have eaten there have been a pleasant surprise. The one slight down side is that the beers are quite overpriced compared to other similar pubs in the area and the ales, whilst well cellared are not well poured.
TartanWanderer - 20 Dec 2011 04:34
The beer was too cold and consequently not in the best condition. Pointed this out to the barman, but he was an 'expert' and was having none of it. Judge for yourselves.
halfabitterman - 28 Sep 2011 13:35
Refurbishment (see below) has now taken place - and nicely done too.

This pub is now blessed with eight hand pumps - four of them devoted to Greene King beers and the other four to the beers of Kent independent brewers. Beers well kept, but the drawback is their prices - which are frightful!
Jack_Spraggon - 24 Jul 2011 09:30
All the previous reviews are soon be become null and void! This pub is now being taken over by the local Royal Tunbridge Wells Brewing Company who are going to shut if for a few weeks to refurbish the place, returning it to a proper old style ale house, complete with 8 handpumps (7 being guests) and real cyder from polypins. This should be done within 1 -2 months, so I'll be able to review it once it reopens
SouthEastAleLovers - 24 May 2011 10:10
The last comment is utterly ridiculous! I was in The Bedford on the day in question waiting with quite a few mates to watch the rugby. ONE of the TVs was turned over after we asked to watch it so the load of people in there for the Rugby could see the start. The other massive TV where most of the football lot were standing was left on footie. No sound was on the rugby just the football so dunno what this guys is complaining about - turning his head to the other TV... how difficult! Poor staff were trying to please everyone! Anyway I like this pub - new decor is great, good atmosphere and live music or DJs every week. Great for a quick pint too when I get off the train.
Andy123 - 24 Nov 2010 14:30
The beer is decent in this pub (the IPA was good), but the barman needs to exercise some restraint when showing the football - he switched channel on one of the screens (to show the rugby, which hadn't even started) when Arsenal started trailing Sp%rs yesterday, annoying half the pub. I'm a gooner, but I want to see the whole match when I'm in a pub to watch the football (there isn't much more of an incentive to drink in this pub). Shocking.
JArticle - 21 Nov 2010 13:06
Has been done up quite nicely recently. Reasonable pint of IPA, if such a thing is posible. But not somewhere i'd rush to. Also has no smoking areas other than the narrow street corner out front, for those who like to puff.
mrse1 - 9 Jan 2008 15:59
Much improved recently with some live music events and a busy trendy type of crowd.Bar staff could be more friendly range of beers and lagers,well worth a look for a change of venue if your at that part on town.Oh and I nearly forgot-its not a gay pub as per the last "review".
ivanski - 5 Jan 2008 14:17
Is this still a gay pub?
Annabanks - 4 Jan 2008 12:58
i think this pub is great.
they show sports, well priced alcohol, friendly atmosphere and the staff are lovely and friendly.
great location too.
i recommend it 2 any1 who wants a decent night out or a quite drink up 2 u!
vikki160389 - 30 Oct 2007 20:21
If you post under a name viewers can check your other posts. Someone who's posted just once and says something bad probably bares a grudge, if it praises the pub it is obvious the owner or manager. Anonymous posts cannot be trusted, and a string of them saying the same thing suggests one person too lazy to make some names up.
bradwan - 14 Aug 2007 23:56
haha. that's right, 'bradwan'. why can't people use their real names?

i have very little to say about this place other than the fact the toilets are very dark.
magic_numbers - 13 Jul 2007 16:01
so is jealousy........positive posts give a bad impression? And you are......?
anonymous - 20 Jun 2007 10:59
The Bedford, a pub for people too cowardly to say who they are? 9 out of the last 10 posts are by anonymous, and they are all positive. It gives a very bad impression.
bradwan - 20 Jun 2007 10:39
oh dear oh dear?????? pubexpert, are you a little jealous!! What a patronising post.......ho ho ho.
anonymous - 20 Jun 2007 09:59
Thanks for a great christmas Colin & Staff!!!
anonymous - 30 Dec 2006 18:01
Just great! I rekon its the busiest pub in T-Wells now!
anonymous - 30 Dec 2006 18:00
Huge improvements in this place since the summer refurb!
Well managed, well staffed and best selection of drinkers this place has seen in years! It's not too keen on chavs which is a bonus. Anyone who's not been for a while should take another visit - reputation as a dodgy boozer well and truly over!
anonymous99 - 23 Dec 2006 17:56
This place has changed drastically since the new manager took over. The lease holder is the guy that has the Rifleman in Sevenoaks and he has employed a very experienced Bar Manager (not pub manager) that is used to managing places in London!

It's got a really nice feel to it now and I have drunk in there many times since they had the most recent refurb! That place has had more face lifts than Michael Jackson, but I think this one is by far the best!!
anonymous - 13 Dec 2006 17:53
The place has dramatically changed for the better. The new fresh look is great!
anonymous - 31 Aug 2006 18:38
The Spa Bar is now The Bedford again as it should be!
Colin is the manager and runs a very good bar. The place now has an identity. I would use this bar before any other in Tunbridge Wells now. He is always there and he has turned the clientele around to now only accommodate the good people og T-Wells!
Great job Colin. P.S. The flowers are a nice touch!!!
anonymous - 31 Aug 2006 18:37
Not one of the better pubs in Tunbridge wells to be honest a certain element get in here and not alot of pride is took in this place to be honest.
juzza - 23 May 2006 08:27
Shocking is all i can say, Bedford again for some reason ????? still the same in side as someone else said, it,s ok but a bit on the weird side really has NO outside at all which is a shame really . Would i go again ... not really better places in T/Wells
drinkingtunbridgewells - 22 Nov 2005 22:28
now called the Bedford again. Not changed much inside though.
hornstreet - 13 Jul 2005 10:43
Not seen many chavs lately, although I did see a guy puke then kiss his girlfriend..

also a bit small this place.
bilbobaggins - 24 Jun 2005 09:26
All this stuff about chavs is ridiculous. The music is good (Thursdays for live band and Saturday night disco are great), the drinks are good (especially the newly added shooters), the atmosphere is friendly and the staff are great (mainly the male members of staff - the girls are lovely but a little on the slow side with serving!) All round nice pub if you ask me, nothing chav-like about it!
anonymous - 6 May 2005 09:25
re the comment "dont think you toffs know what a chav is" ... i think the nation now know what chavs are: puckered pale skin, lost look on their face, burberry, swearing, hanging around town centres, mo-peds, massive earings.. just seem to be a few of these in the spa... apart from that, its a nice place.
bilbobaggins - 11 Mar 2005 12:12
been there once with a few friends and it was just full of teenagers, even though i was told later it was meant to be an over 21's establishment! service was good and the drinks were good as well, but the amount of burberry that i saw there was rather extreme!
sophie_r - 24 Feb 2005 11:35
It looked really promising when it was being changed from The Bedford to this. To be honest I have only been a handful of times and have not really noticed any chavs there. But nothing seems to happen, it is very bland and aside for using it if a game is on or for a few before bording the train to London, I don't think it serves any real purpose. They do at least serve real ale though!!
StevieG - 2 Nov 2004 13:46
great bar, don't think you toffs know what a chav is
adam - 30 Sep 2004 17:03
I agree with all the comments, i drink here some days times because it's near work but, don't bother with it other times, has a cute barmaid, but other than that, can't say anything good about it
anonymous - 21 Jun 2004 00:07
A curious thing the "chavs" do u think any of them read these reviews and think: "yes i like chavs, ill go there" they must do... !!! stick to the barn, pitcher piano, compass's and orsen wells, to avoid 17yr old chavs,
jack - 16 Jun 2004 14:30
I have to agree with the above poster. When they were refurbishing it prior to opening it looked like it was going to be quite a stylish place. Unfortunately it's now a magnet for every chav in tunbridge wells. The atmosphere is unpleasant bordering on hostile, and it's just a horrible place to be. Unless you're a chav, when you'll feel right at home.
jon - 14 Apr 2004 13:36
i hope the 7.2 rating is a joke. i can only assume it must be. went a few saturdays ago cos it was open late and i can honestly say it was one of the chavviest places i've ever seen. if you want to drown in a sea of earrings and burberry then make this your local.
jerry - 19 Mar 2004 16:45

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